Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-09-01-Speech-1-132"

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"Mr President, Mr President-in-Office of the Council, Commissioner: ‘Le nationalisme, c’est la guerre!’ This is an exact quote from François Mitterrand’s speech to the European Parliament, with no abbreviation. I think we can learn from this, and the lesson to be learned is European integration. That means no longer attempting to settle past accounts, but starting afresh in order to make war and dictatorship an impossibility in Europe once and for all. I should like to voice my most heartfelt thanks to the French Presidency for its rapid intervention to end the war and for bringing about a European Council decision today which is an expression of unity. Unity is the most important signal that we can send out. It is a signal that we will not accept violations of international law, that we will not accept war and the invasion of foreign countries, and that we will not accept the destabilisation of democratically elected governments or the invasion and occupation of another country. It is important, therefore, to make it clear that there will be no negotiations on the partnership and cooperation agreement until there is compliance with the fifth principle of the ceasefire agreement – namely a return to the lines held before 7 August – and that an evaluation of compliance with all six principles of the ceasefire agreement must now begin and continue in the run-up to the forthcoming summit scheduled to take place in November 2008. It is important that we make clear that certain things will not be accepted, but it is also important – so that we do not slip into an escalation spiral – to make it clear that lines of communication must remain open. Above all, we must reinforce our own capacities, and that means reinforcing our friends’ capacities as well. It means providing immediate infrastructural assistance to Georgia without red tape. It means participating in peace missions in Georgia and in initiatives carried out by the OSCE and the UN. We must make it clear that negotiations on a free trade agreement are the right path to pursue, as indeed are the proposals that we have made here in the House in line with the Polish-Swedish initiative or our proposal for an ‘EEA Plus’. This applies not only to Georgia but also to countries such as Moldova and especially Ukraine. I think these are clear signals which enable us to move forward in a positive way. If in so doing, we could recognise that we could do this so much better, if only we did not always have to bale out a situation which others have caused, if only we had a European foreign policy which, under the Treaty of Lisbon, would give us appropriate mechanisms and increased preventive capacities to stop this situation from arising in the first place, that would be a policy that we should pursue. This crisis should clearly demonstrate that, as the European Union, we must strengthen our own capacities if we want to prevent war and move towards a positive future."@en1

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